Review: Avengers #690

The battle is over, and those left standing in the rubble have to find a way to move forward. As an era of the Avengers comes to a close, what will rise to take its place?

I have loved “No Surrender.” As a weekly event it delivered in almost every issue and is one of the few recent events that feels like it lived up to the hype and paid off. It was an epic story that brought together multiple teams to fight what felt like insurmountable odds.

Writers Mark Waid, Al Ewing, and Jim Zub have weaved a story that had tons of action and lots of twists and turns. It felt like an Avengers epic.

Avengers #690 is the dust settling from all of that and while it asks “what will rise to take its place?,” that question is never fully answered. And in that way it’s a bit of a let down. We know the trinity of Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor will come together to form a new team but none of that happens here.

Instead, the story goes over the destruction of Avengers Mansion as various members discuss rebuilding. What’s at the heart of the story though is Jarvis and Nadia. Together the two are adorable and you can’t help but feel like they’re the embodiment of the hopeful nature of the team and positive ideals it all lives up to. There’s moments of members walking off to do their thing. It’s that coda where the voiceover talks about friends leaving as they fade away. In that way it’s good. But, what’s next? This issue doesn’t answer that other than ads in the back.

In that way the issue fails. It falls into the bad habit Marvel has had where the concluding issue of events acts as a 22 page advertisement for new series. In this case we get two. The upcoming relaunch is one. The search for Quicksilver is the other. Beyond those ads though, there’s no moment to get you excited. The issue lacks someone saying “the world needs the Avengers.” There’s emotional moments but it lacks an emotional punch.

The art by Pepe Larraz, color by David Curiel, and lettering by Cory Petit do a fine job. There’s destruction, a lot of it. But even in the rubble, the artistic team make things recognizable. You can make out parts of the mansion. You can see sections that were there before and in your mind you rework what it all looks like. There’s a lot of characters too and each looks fantastic. The aforementioned Jarvis/Nadia moment was fantastic and there’s a certain positive energy about it.

The issue isn’t bad and as part of the event it’s a fine finale. It takes stock of what has become before but when it comes to what’s next, it lacks excitement.

Story: Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub Art: Pepe Larraz
Color: David Curiel Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review